Data Center Migration: Creating a Winning Relocation Strategy

Aug 11, 2020 | Colocation

As business needs evolve, footprints grow and data strategies sometimes change, it’s common for enterprises to relocate their data or find a new colocation data center. Migrating to a new data center may seem intimidating and scary at first, but with the right partner and strategy at the helm, you will be able to navigate a migration with expert support at all times.

Nevertheless, planning ahead and creating a thorough strategy for any data center relocation is vital for ensuring a seamless transition and a successful move. Much of the process comes down to timing and accomplishing sets of tasks at the right phase, whether that’s six months prior or after the migration is supposedly complete. To guide teams as they look to make a switch and leverage data center solutions that match their needs, we’ve laid out some key things to remember along the way. Keep in mind though that individual company requirements, as well as the size of the deployment, can change timelines and levels of complexity, and everything should be adjusted to fit your needs.

Three Keys for A Winning Colocation Strategy:

1. Identify Team Duties and Tasks

Outlining team duties should be first order of business, as having everyone understand their role in the process and be on top of duties will ease this transition from beginning to end. Enterprises should choose a migration engineer that ideally has experience with this type of project or has insight into the many associated departments. Typically, the migration engineer is a master organizer and project manner who is highly experienced in data center migrations. Team leads for different departments that are involved in the migration should also be established and should be able to sign off on migration plans once they’re outlined.

Having weekly preparation meetings for a month or more with department leaders and managers is helpful for letting everyone know what to expect and for limiting disruption where possible. Having an extended prep time also means that the chances of anything unexpected popping up at the last second is minimized. Furthermore, some data center equipment must be ordered up to 60 days in advance, so keeping ahead of these deadlines is vital for averting last-minute emergencies.

2. Create an Equipment Inventory

This is the time when an inventory of all equipment should be created (so nothing is misplaced and everything is accounted for), documentation such as port maps and rack elevation should be reviewed, disaster recovery and contingency plans should be tested, and more. This is the time to start doing real checks and protection measures for all your equipment and processes. Additionally, leveraging a colocation provider that partners with firms that specialize in data center moves, adds a layer of peace of mind as they ensure everything is accounted for and that all enterprise requirements are met before a migration. Spare hard drives should be ordered, hired movers should be evaluated if necessary, and a firm game plan for move day should be established based on those discussions.

In the days leading up to the migration, be sure to check your teams in with the data center’s security and include any third parties. Also, don’t forget your power cables, your testing plan, your in-cabinet patch cables, and your SFP cables.

3. Test All Processes After Migration

Remember that the move isn’t over the minute everything is in the door. Teams should be sure to test all processes and applications against your baseline tests, validate your documentation, make sure everything is updated, and evaluate how the process went. Give yourself extra time in case the equipment does not come up as planned.

At Data Foundry, we know this can be overwhelming, especially if teams aren’t working with in-house experts. At Data Foundry, we are consistently helping enterprises migrate to our world-class-facilities. With dedicated 24x7x365 support, our data center migration experts are always on-hand.

That’s why if enterprises are moving into a Data Foundry facility such as our Texas 2 location—our state-of-the-art, 325,000-square-foot, 36 MW data center—we offer services to help you accomplish everything you need to and get the best outcome for your IT.

Not only do we offer the built-in redundancy, high-density, concurrently maintainable cooling, uptime and connectivity your data requires, we support your migration with documentation validation support, network and application security compliance help, and scalability planning.

To get a more detailed view into what your planning process should look like for optimized success, you can download our migration checklist here.

To get a quick quote for our Texas 2 facility, click here.